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Johnny and the Dead by Terry Pratchett

Johnny and the Dead (1993)

by Terry Pratchett

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Johnny Maxwell (2)

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1,467225,089 (3.69)33

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English (21)  Polish (1)  All (22)
Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
Yes, my ranking's probably high because Pratchett is no longer with us (sob). But this is still an entertaining read, with more insight and soul than usually implied by the YA label. Johnny and his buddies are fun and interesting characters to hang out with, and the take on time travel is refreshingly original and hilarious. I'm only sorry that Pratchett only did a trilogy instead of a longer series. And no one else had better try ... narrativium may be everywhere, but talent's rare and Pratchett's brand of magic rarer still. ( )
  bostonian71 | Sep 18, 2016 |
Read it back when I working really hard to appreciate the love my friends have for Pratchett, don't remember it now. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
A novel ostensibly about a boy who can see dead people but which is really about home and tradition. There are some nice touches that make up for what is otherwise a sparse novel (if the author were anyone but Pratchett, I wouldn't have criticisms, but I know what the author can do); the bit with the Demon God Yoth-Ziggurat is quite profound and the policeman who doesn't know the letters alphabet is very funny. ( )
  Lukerik | May 17, 2015 |
A nice quick read. I preferred it to the previous book in the series as it was funnier and the plot was better. ( )
  martensgirl | Apr 21, 2015 |
Nice quick read, managed to read it in about three sittings. Short enough to almost read in one day.

Classic Terry Pratchett sense of humour, lots of funny bits that I couldn't help but laugh out loud at or share with my husband.

Couldn't put all my favourite quotes into my book journal because lots of them ran over a whole page or more.

Read out of order, originally thought it was third but it's actually second. Don't feel like I missed anything by reading it out of order, just Mrs Tachyon's introduction.

Was expecting to see Kirsty in this one but she's not in it. ( )
  ClicksClan | Dec 10, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, December 1, 2005 (Vol. 73, No. 23))
Fresh from leading the ScreeWee fleet across hostile game space and back to their own territory, Johnny Maxwell returns to champion a more local group of beings in need: the dead denizens of the local cemetery, slated for redevelopment into Modern Purpose-Designed Offices by United Amalgamated Consolidated Holdings. Pratchett's cry against the needlessly tragic rejection of communities and their histories is just as passionate as was his cry against war in Only You Can Save Mankind (2004). Johnny allows himself to be conscripted by the dead, whom only he can see. They are an agreeable assortment of sweetly loony characters including a former Alderman, a suffragist, a socialist and an inventor, who, along with the rest of their fellows, represent the collective history and culture of Blackbury. If the narrative turns a bit preachy at times, kids will nevertheless find themselves won over by both the dead and Johnny's basic sense of decency. Humor and honest pathos play off each other to make for an emotionally balanced whole, one whose resolution will be as satisfying to readers as it is to Johnny. 2006
added by kthomp25 | editKirkus
Jane Harrington (Children's Literature)
The second book in “The Johnny Maxwell Trilogy” gets off to a good start (“Johnny never knew for certain why he started seeing the dead…”) but quickly becomes a surprisingly poor read from the prolific author of Discworld, and the “Bromeliad Trilogy.” The story loosely revolves around twelve-year-old Johnny and his fight to keep a cemetery from being destroyed, though most of the pages are devoted to other happenings that are not well-connected to this central theme. Attempts at parody and humor sometimes work--as in many of the conversations between Johnny and the “post-life citizens”--but most fall flat, or are too dated or too tied to the author’s own (British) culture. There is a level of crassness, too, that borders on offensive, as in this description which seems intended to show what social misfits Johnny’s friends are: “And then there was Johnny, and Wobbler, and Bigmac, who said he was the last of the well hard skin-heads but was actually a skinny kid with short hair and flat feet and asthma who had difficulty even walking in Doc Martens, and there was Yo-less, who was technically black.” Young readers on this side of the pond are very apt to consider that racial remark a slur-- and probably will not have a clue what “well hard skin-heads” and “Doc Martens” are. Brit-lit can be great fun, but there clearly could have been a heavier editorial hand in the Americanization of this book. Overall, a disappointing offering from such an experienced writer. 2006
added by kthomp25 | editChildren's Literature, Jane Harrington

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Terry Pratchettprimary authorall editionscalculated
Avon, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mitchley, RichardNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Johnny never knew for certain why he started seeing the dead.
Life was difficult enough already. Let someone else say something.
It's wrong to think that the past is something that's just gone. It's still there. It's just that You've gone past. If you drive through a town, it's still there in the rearview mirror: Time is a road, but it doesn't roll up behind you. Things aren't over just because they're past. Do you see that?
If we start off not knowing what we're going to do, we could do anything.
"I hardly did anything." "You listened. You tried. You were there. You can get medal just for being there."
Johnny blinked. And looked around at the world. It was, not to put too fine a point on it, wonderful. Which wasn't the same as nice. It wasn't the same as nice. It wasn't even the same as good. But it was full of...stuff. You'd never get to the end of it. It was always springing new things on you....
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0552527408, Paperback)

paperback, vg+

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:16 -0400)

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When the local council starts planning to build on the town cemetery, Terry becomes involved with the local ghosts who refuse to take it lying down. Suggested level: intermediate, junior secondary.

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